Twenty three noted citizens of the country have called upon the government to allow ailing BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia to travel abroad for treatment. 

"We express deep concern over the critical condition of former prime minister Begum Khaleda Zia. Regrettably, she is being denied the opportunity to seek medical treatment abroad. Her doctors have stressed that there is no alternative but to arrange for her immediate treatment abroad to save her life," they said in a statement on Thursday (12 October).

They also mentioned that there have been instances in the country where political leaders, despite facing convictions, have been sent abroad for medical treatment. 

"The fundamental right to life for citizens supersedes political considerations. Unfortunately, the law ministry's decision to deny Khaleda Zia's request for overseas treatment does not align with this principle," they added.

They have urged the law ministry to reconsider its stance and take necessary steps to facilitate Khaleda Zia's treatment abroad.

The signatories of the statement include - M Hafiz Uddin Khan, former advisor to caretaker government; former cabinet secretary Ali Imam Majumder; Sharmeen Murshid, chief executive officer of non-government organization Brotee, lawyer Shahdeen Malik, lawyer Rizwana Hasan, local government expert Tofail Ahmed, photographer Shahidul Alam, Professor CR Abrar, Professor Dr Asif Nazrul, human rights activist Shirin P Haque, Nur Khan Liton, Rehnuma Ahmed and Hana Shams Ahmed.